Of all the artists included in Select magazine’s November ‘93 Yanks go home piece, The Auteurs’ Luke Haines was always the least likely to fly the Britpop flag. The clues were there, in his response to the first interview question:
I don’t think there’s anything great about Britain as such. I don’t have any great feelings of love towards this country
People love a label, though, so more often than not you’ll find them lumped in with the britpoppers.
In 1996, with Oasis riding high in the album charts, The Auteurs released their third and essentially anti-britpop album After Murder Park (sample song titles: Light Aircraft on Fire, The Child Brides, Everything You Say Will Destroy You, Unsolved Child Murder). The never less than interesting Haines then released a solo album under the name Baader Meinhof, and went on to form Black Box Recorder, before returning to solo work under his own name, releasing esoteric concept albums such as 9½ Psychedelic Meditations on British Wrestling of the 1970s and early ’80s and Rock and Roll Animals. In between these last two he was involved in The North Sea Scrolls, an album presenting an alternative history of the British Isles in musical and narrative form.
But back to New Wave, which was purchased on one of my forays down to the independent Revolution Records in Windsor (usually empty until you asked if you could have a listen of something, at which point the store would fill up with judgemental record buyers), and which, when I need a little lyrical darkness and bitterness, I still wheel out for regular listens. Unlike much of the Britpop that followed.